Microsoft’s next Xbox has been the recipient of only bad media as of late because of rumors claiming the console won’t play games if it’s not connected to the internet, and will block used games from working. Games Thirst’s Tim Ceaser explains why Microsoft should forfeit its current path.
The web has been aflutter with the impending arrival of Microsoft’s new Xbox, especially some of its least wanted features. No one is talking about how its processors stack up to the PlayStation 4′s or how its controller compares to Sony’s. Instead all that anyone can talk about are two things; constant connectivity and used game blocking.
I’m sure that there are many articles about the constant connectivity, and maybe I will go on a rant about that later, but for now I would like to look at blocking used games and how both sides of the fence could see it.
On the one hand let’s look at game publishers / developers, these people make the games and release them, if you buy a game used the people who are behind the game get absolutely nothing. the store you bought the game from makes the profit, which is still ultimately good for the overall system since stores that sell games are definitely useful, despite the end of their usefulness coming whether we want it to or not.
On the other hand there are the buyers, people like you or myself who go to the store and buy the games. We are the reason why some games are popular and others are not. We are the ones keeping the industry alive.
Unfortunately we are also not necessarily rich. It can be hard to support our favorite games with prices rising, although they are still cheaper than they were in the days of the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis, they are definitely more expensive than they were in the days of the original PlayStation. I love games and I love buying new games but I cannot justify spending 60 or 70 dollars on a game that in a few months will be marked down to only 30. So I either wait for the price to go down or buy it used.
If the next Xbox blocks used game sales I probably wouldn’t buy as many games for it, subsequently I likely would not play it as often, and then I would have to ask myself why do I even have this thing?
Since I am already asking myself this I doubt that I would even buy it in the first place, especially if Sony does not block used games on their system.
Unless there was a price reduction.
Right now I am paying 60 to 70 dollars for a new game, if used games are such a threat to the industry then a console that blocks them should have cheaper games than its competitor, since it would have to raise game prices in order to compensate for money lost from used game transactions.
So if new Xbox games were cheaper, at least 10 dollars cheaper than their PS4 counterparts it would be worth my while to pick up this new Xbox.
I don’t think that will happen. Right now more and more games are being bought on Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network. Many of these games are classics from previous consoles or new titles developed just for online sales. However there are also full blown games that you would normally have had to buy in hard format that you can now buy and download without any disk at all. While this may be fantastic for the lazy gamer, it annoys me since the prices are the same. If I download Gears of War Judgement it would cost me the same as if I would go to the store and buy it. This makes no sense. in a downloadable game there is no hard copy, no case, no store, no middle man. The lack of all of these should keep the price down and subsequently encourage more people to download the game and, in turn, hurt used game sales.
Instead prices are the same (incidentally I used a game for the Xbox 360 but the PlayStation 3 has the same problem). So despite no chance of selling a downloaded game and subsequently costing the publisher a sale they greedily chose to keep the prices the same.
So if the new Xbox does block used game sales I expect game prices to stay the same for it and the system will suffer.
Of course nothing is final and the official word on the new Xbox is not out yet, it will be interesting to see what happens when this new console is revealed.